Linda Ruud

Poems Linda Ruud


Linda Ruud (7. XII 1932 – 23. VI 2010) was a poet, prose writer and renowned editor of poetry.

Linda Ruud was born at Lehtse in Järvamaa county, the daughter of a railway worker and a teacher. The further development of the future poet was determined by the hard post-war conditions. The family moved to Tapa in 1936, and Ruud completed her secondary schooling there in 1951. Thereafter she went to study at Tartu State University, specializing in logic and psychology in the faculty of history and languages. She worked for a regional paper in Tapa, and as an interpreter in the Õhtuleht newspaper office in Tallinn. For a lengthy period Linda Ruud worked as an editor at the Eesti Raamat publishing house. For twenty-five years (1964-1989) she was the editor for Estonian poetry. The Estonian poetry of the period passed across her desk.

Linda Ruud’s debut as a poet came in 1962. She was the only female author on a new phenomenon, the first poetry cassette of the “Young Poets”, in company with Paul-Eerik Rummo, Arvi Siig, Mats Traat and Enn Vetemaa. This and the subsequent poetry cassettes proved to be a breakthrough in Estonian cultural history; the young poets of that era are known even today as the “cassette poets”. Ruud’s first collection, on the first cassette, bore the optimistic title Mu südames on pühapäev (‘In My Heart it’s Sunday’). More thoughtful, wider-ranging and more philosophical was the collection Naera, Kassandra (‘Laugh, Cassandra’), which appeared in 1973. Linda Ruud’s poetic career came to an end with her third collection, Mõte Tulemaast (‘The Idea of Tierra del Fuego’), which came out in 1989.  

Between poetry collections, Ruud’s only novel Naine vabast ajast (‘Being a Woman in Free Time’) appeared in 1979.

Ruud has also published poetry criticism and compiled several poetry anthologies.

L. P. (Translated by C. M.)

Books in Estonian

Mu südames on pühapäev: luuletusi 1955–1962. Tallinn: Eesti Riiklik Kirjastus, 1962, 44 lk.
Naera, Kassandra: värsse, 1963–1972. Tallinn: Eesti Raamat, 1973, 72 lk.
Mõte Tulemaast: värsse, 1980–1987. Tallinn: Eesti Raamat, 1989, 91 lk.

Naine vabast ajast: romaan. Tallinn: Eesti Raamat, 1979, 105 lk.